Almost two thirds of adults report that their stress levels are now higher than they were five years ago. Worse still, 76% of adults say that this stress has affected their personal relationships while 66% report that they have lost sleep over work-based stress.
We understand the demands that employers can place on individuals – often without realising it. For this reason, at Harris Glubb, we actively encourage regular communication within our team – creating a support network where everyone feels comfortable enough to talk about their problems and concerns at any time.
If the pressures of work are getting on top of you and you’re in need of some new coping mechanisms to make things feel more manageable, then have a read of our six ways to reduce stress in the workplace.
A strong support network of colleagues, friends and family can significantly ease your work troubles and help you to see things from a different and clearer perspective. Activities such as having dinner together or planning a day trip can really allow you to relax by transporting you away from your worries and concerns.
We often need quality time with loved ones to effectively relieve stress and talking things through with a friend will always help to lift the weight off your shoulders. Remember, a trouble shared is a trouble halved and is often the first step towards finding a workable solution.
Everyone knows that stress can lead to a loss of sleep. Unfortunately, a lack of sleep can also lead to a heightened feeling of stress. This vicious cycle can cause the body and the mind to become out of sync, with the effects only worsening over time.
Make sure you wind down properly in the evenings before getting the recommended seven to eight hours of sleep. Our bodies crave a regular routine, especially when it comes to sleep. If our sleep cycle is constantly disrupted, other symptoms can surface including extreme fatigue, memory problems, confusion, emotional instability and even physical illness.
To wind down in the evening, try turning the tv off earlier, dimming the lights, switching off your phone and giving yourself enough time to thoroughly relax before bed. This important stress reliever is widely recommended and should be repeated on a daily basis.
Exercise can really help to reduce some of the intense emotions created by stress and anxiety. Research suggests that exercise can boost your mood while providing ample benefits for both mental and physical health. Any type of exercise is good, so it’s important to find something that suits your lifestyle and provides you with enjoyment in order to create the motivation and determination you need to do it regularly.
It is recommended for adults to complete 150 minutes of moderately intense exercise every week. If you have not exercised for a while, start gradually and set yourself the target of building up to 150 minutes each week. Small changes can make a big difference – even a brisk 10 minute walk can clear your mind and help you to relax.
On average, UK employees work the longest hours in Europe – which means that we regularly forget to take time out for ourselves.
Setting aside a couple of nights a week for some quality ‘me’ time away from work will help to relieve stress and clear the mind. Warm baths are a great way to relax. They deliver an abundance of skin and health benefits such as loosening muscle tension and pains, while promoting a feeling of detox and self care.
Whenever you feel angry or stressed, it’s important to remember the positive things in your life and put negative thoughts into perspective. At the end of each day, make a list of the things that went really well or the things that you’re proud of. Reflect on your list when you’re travelling home or sitting in the evenings and remember to give yourself a pat on the back for a job well done – you deserve it.
One of the most straightforward solutions available to us all when managing stress is to drink the recommended intake of water everyday. When you’re dehydrated, your brain struggles to function at optimal levels and your cortisol level (the hormone which controls stress) goes up.
Taking care of yourself by eating well and drinking plenty of water is quite often one of the first things people forget to do when under intense stress. By making a conscious effort to get this right, you’ll set yourself up to deal with stress from a much better place.
Breaks are very important and often underrated at work. They give you the opportunity to take a moment to yourself, before returning to the job in hand with a fresh perspective.
A quick win when planning breaks is to take ample time away from work during your lunch hour. Get up from your desk and force yourself to walk out of the office for a change of scenery. Taking in some fresh air, eating outdoors or visiting the local park are great ways to alleviate any stress that’s built up throughout the morning. A midday comfort break will really allow you to reflect and mentally prepare you for a productive afternoon ahead.